Meeting 9/25/03 - DTN - Middle Section


Moderator: Trish Ward Dolkas (Sally-Ann Rudd note-taker).



1)      380 Palo Alto Ave

                                                   i.      minimal inconvenience outweighed by safety, quietness brought about by calming measures

                                                 ii.      extra 2 minutes to get out of neighborhood, even with kids in the car, is not an inconvenience

                                                iii.      we make 2-4 trips per day, which means 8-10 mins per day extra in the car. Not a problem.

2)      310 Poe

                                                   i.      much quieter, especially in the mornings

3)      377 Waverley

                                                   i.      getting more noise and traffic than before on Lytton

                                                 ii.      Waverley is noisier

4)      228 Waverley

                                                   i.      overall traffic volume has decreased

                                                 ii.      Waverley still busy but half a block away at children's area of park, calm and safe

                                                iii.      important to look beyond your own front yard and see benefits

5)      203 Bryant

                                                   i.      have suffered 22 yrs of traffic from apartments

                                                 ii.      whole neighborhood is quieter

                                                iii.      small cars can pass through the closures, which is very dangerous as other traffic is not expecting this; they put one wheel up on curb and can squeeze through. Is this illegal?

                                               iv.      Hawthorne traffic quieter, more like a neighborhood

                                                 v.      occasional bicyclist incorrectly assuming right of way, this has been elminated

6)      275 Hawthorne

                                                   i.      is 2 mins a day extra in the car really an improvement in quality of life for residents?

                                                 ii.      2 mins a trip can easily result in extra 16 mins each day - people don't want to have to spend extra time in the car

7)      328 Kipling

                                                   i.      good to track down places where traffic is better or worse

                                                 ii.      colleague who lives at 280/ Page Mill. He used to commute through neighborhood but now cannot. He is considerate driver. But, seems only way to improve driver behavior is through coercion which means closing streets.

8)      42 Ruthven

                                                   i.      enjoy feeling of community from street closures - feels more friendly

                                                 ii.      don't mind driving around block to get out of neighborhood

                                                iii.      as a pedestrian, no longer have to wait to cross Hawthorne - much easier

9)      351 Bryant Ct

                                                   i.      Bryant Ct is alley with 3 speed bumps, there is no change in traffic

                                                 ii.      neighborhood is quiet, you can hear people in park talking etc

                                                iii.      drive to work every day. Now lights on Lytton are resynced, takes same time as before to get to work

                                               iv.      at the weekend, make 5-10 trips and have not noticed increase in journey times

10)  167 Bryant

                                                   i.      some areas in neighborhood more dangerous and have more cars

                                                 ii.      Bryant St still dangerous, always has been dangerous

                                                iii.      stop signs on Bryant would solve speeding problems better/ simpler than other calming measures

                                               iv.      Turning onto southbound Middlefield from Everett or Hawthorne now more dangerous than before. Having to swerve around bulbouts has made these intersections more dangerous than before. They were dangerous before, now very dangerous.

                                                 v.      traffic patterns around neighborhood have been changed, there is now more traffic on streets that are not suited for traffic e.g. Ramona

11)  422 Palo Alto Ave

                                                   i.      speeding on Palo Alto Ave greatly reduced

                                                 ii.      Menlo Park car dealers used to use Palo Alto Ave for test drives, now stopped

                                                iii.      Samtrans bus used to go down Palo Alto Ave; now stopped

12)  317 Everett

                                                   i.      moved to neighborhood in April 2003

                                                 ii.      when moved in, amazed at how loud traffic was, and how fast, especially considering proximity of senior center and park

                                                iii.      love traffic calming, have observed overall decrease in traffic and slower speeds

13)  203 Bryant

                                                   i.      22 yrs resident

                                                 ii.      thought knew all neighbors' dogs; now at least 25-30 new dogs. More community feeling, people feeling more confident and comfortable walking around

14)  323 Hawthorne

                                                   i.      huge net benefit: quieter and can sit in house with front door open and still have conversation

                                                 ii.      committed to not driving by choice - glad for more community support for biking and walking. Good to favor walkers and bikers.

15)  187 Bryant (@ Hawthorne)

                                                   i.      wife & 2 young children

                                                 ii.      love traffic calming, but not perfect

                                                iii.      neighborhood is quiet

                                               iv.      frequent car accidents at Bryant - weekly

                                                 v.      request: Bryant is bicycle boulevard, but please put traffic circle at every intersection. That would slow traffic and allow bikes to have access.

                                               vi.      Middlefield bulbouts dangerous the way they are now

16)  228 Waverely

                                                   i.      since you can walk from anywhere in neighborhood to Lytton in 2 minutes, how can it possibly take extra 2 mins to get there in car?

                                                 ii.      Lytton left turn lane on southbound Alma has greatly reduced drive time

17)  311 Everett

                                                   i.      have noticed decrease in traffic

                                                 ii.      cross Everett on foot and now don't have to wait for traffic gap

                                                iii.      people wanting to go north on Middlefield inconvenienced, because can't easily turn north

                                               iv.      willing to tolerate inconvenience for benefits

18)  Lytton / Middlefield neighbors are not getting any benefit, they are getting more traffic problems

19)  Palo Alto has arterials for traffic, and residential streets which are not for traffic.

                                                   i.      neighborhood streets have come to be used as arterials, this is root of problem

                                                 ii.      no one would design a neighborhood like DTN if they were designing it today

                                                iii.      Lytton could be designed better for high volume of traffic

20)  Lytton very noisy

                                                   i.      traffic lights on Lytton still need improvement

21)  all traffic calming increases emergency response time - even 1 minute makes a difference - fire can get established in 1 min

22)  garbage trucks have keys to bollards - they can get through amazingly fast, why can't fire truck get through as fast?


2.      BULBOUTS

1)      Definitions - bulbouts only exist at Hawthorne and at Waverley. They are wider and designed to slow traffic. Gateways indicate entering residential neighborhood and are narrower.

2)      childrens' park needs protection from cars; bulbout on Waverley at park does nothing to slow traffic - only as wide as a parked car, most of time cannot be seen

3)      Menlo Park / University Ave: there are gateways there, they are better. They are higher and closer to curb. Gateways should be taller and more noticeable

4)      Gateways should be placed nearer neighborhood on residential street

5)      Mountain View / Dana / Villa: there are bulbouts which do work to slow traffic

6)      Bulbout design is not clear - drivers don't know what to do, which causes dangerous confusion

7)      bulbouts will cause a head-on collision because they are confusing

8)      gateways at Hawthorne & Everett @ Middlefield are dangerous because if you stop for oncoming car, a car behind you is not expecting you to stop

9)      need to look at more effective bulbout design, something that makes it clearer what a driver is supposed to do

10)  Middlefield gateways are inappropriate. Waverley bulbout needs redesign

11)  Better signage would provide just as effective a deterrent as gateways



1)      sight line issue on Bryant - there are too many parked cars

2)      downtown garage impact - will that change ability to go up and down on Bryant?

3)      Police put a speed truck on Bryant, but they parked it behind a parked car. No one could see it. Totally ineffective.

4)      cross traffic cannot see through traffic on Bryant. Still same problem. This is a problem irrespective of speed.

5)      still valet parking on Bryant. Isn't this illegal?

6)      speed always a problem on Bryant; this is exacerbated by lack of traffic coming in the other direction.

7)      Everett northbound at Waverley example that even if you have a stop sign, it's ineffective because people don't bother to stop when they know there's no cross traffic

8)      traffic circles would work for Bryant because they slow cars, give bikes access, and more efficient because if there's no other traffic you can keep going without stopping

9)      Bryant / Palo Alto Ave intersection particularly bad because drivers frustrated when they get all the way to PA Ave then realize they can't go any further

10)  many parking garage workers are parking on Bryant

11)  speed bumps on Bryant would work

12)  Bryant is a little worse than before. Traffic circle would be best measure.

13)   Most people who know area stop at Bryant anyway, even though no stop sign, because they know it is dangerous.

14)  Replace Bryant Street stop sign(s)

15)  Menlo Park / Willow has speed tables, these are no problems for bikes

16)  Fire/ Police do not usually like speed bumps. Speed tables any better?

17)  traffic circles are expensive - we would need many. Nice but costly.

18)  4-way stops on Bryant @ Hawthorne & Everett might work better than restoring 2-way stops

19)  Bryant bike boulevard should get some attention regardless of traffic calming



1)      remove parking spaces on Lytton and make it 4 lanes

2)      make Lytton & Hamilton into 1-way streets

3)      time lights better on Lytton

4)      take out parking spaces on 1 side of Lytton, make it 3 lanes in commute direction, maybe switch 3rd lane like Golden Gate Bridge

5)      remove some lights on Lytton

6)      tear out sidewalk and make lanes wider: make Lytton less resistant to traffic

7)      Lytton / Bryant residents can't park on street now

8)      if Lytton is fast traffic, if too many lanes, Lytton will cut DTN off from downtown. Difficult to walk across

9)      have to look at whole of downtown, not just Lytton. If fix Lytton, should also fix Hamilton & University at same time. Not just a DTN problem.

10)  no problems with traffic on Lytton

11)  traffic flow issue - people coming on Everett and circling park to continue on Everett. This is not right, it's creating more traffic on Kipling and near park.

12)  we should be considerate of our neighbors. Some streets cannot take a lot of traffic, so we residents should avoid them and should not speed.